If the Add as Friend button worked, I'd add you. It's blue on my screen -- only the green buttons work. (Well, some of the red ones do.) I assume Bill Gates owns Ning, and makes life here hard for Mac users.
Hey Greg... No, problem... I knew I would see you somewhere, sometime. I'd appreciate any feedback, and also I'd like to talk about akontings. I saw the vid of you in Florida last March and had lots of questions.
I've been interested in minstrel banjo for many years (though not yet as a player). I'm glad to see that people are getting very serious about the early banjo repertoire. Since I saw you at the Banjo Collectors Gathering a couple of years ago, I've built up a small collection of paper ephemera related to minstrelsy. My main interest is still early Japanese entertainers in America (circa 1860-1880), but there's a lot of crossover. Anyway, thanks for the welcome!
Thank you, Greg. It took my wife Mary and I only about an hour to get one decent picture of me. I guess I'll have to give up my life-long dream of being a male model. It was a pleasure to meet you, as well, Greg and all the other banjoistas. I've played minstrel banjo for a fairly long time, and except for Dave Kirchner, the people at the EABG III were the first others of my kind I've actually come into contact with.
Hi Greg. Thanks for the welcome. I am currently building two minstrel banjos. One is made with a Paulonia neck (light, soft, but strong) and a thin (0.21" thick laminated 13inch rim, and boxwood fingerboard. It will have a tack head. Total weight - about 2 pounds. Any suggestions on tack head installation? i.e, when wet should it be very tight, snug, or a little loose? The other banjo has a mahogany neck w/ boxwood f.b., 1/4" thick, 12" rim, and conventional head tension system.
I enjoy playing the tune very much (for now mostly from Briggs and Converse 1865. I am still benefitting from all I learned at the Early American Banjo Gathering in 2010.
Greg: There are only three 'tunes' (polkas). All the rest are songs, and I'm not much of a singer. Three are from 1867, and six other songs I wrote about either my team or vintage base ball in general and put to period melodies. I don't know how to send audio/video online. Tim evidently does but I don't know that he would want to clog up the site with two more base ball polkas. I could send you a CD if you want to give your postal address. Perhaps directly would be better (firstname.lastname@example.org) than over the banjo site. Up to you.
Hello Greg. I've been looking through Buckley's manual. The minstrel stuff isn't "speaking" to me just yet. I am interested in the expanded use of my hands and some of the notated syncopation found among his literature. Let's link up in cyberland at some point. Perhaps what I need (what I always feel I need) is a guide. Are there any indicators in the literature on minstrel playing about how fast to play, or how slow? And I have another question about these syncopated melodies. Are these songs intended to be danced to? Or, are they parlor pieces meant for listening? Your thoughts?
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